The Sound of Glass by Karen White
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Sound of Glass was my introduction to author Karen White, who writes what has been called 'grit-lit' (as opposed to 'chic-lit') because of her southern settings. The location of the story is Beaufort, South Carolina. I have a very close friend who lives there with her daughter part of the year and that caught my attention.
THE STORY: Merritt Heyward learns that she has inherited a big old Victorian house from her late husband's reclusive grandmother. Feeling guilty about his death and at loose ends, she leaves Maine determined to take up residence in Beaufort.
Before she can catch her breath, her too-young widowed step mother appears with Merritt's ten year old half-brother wanting to move in with her. Loralee claims to be cash strapped with nowhere else to turn. Reluctantly Merritt agrees they can stay for a short time even though she longs for time alone to heal.
WHAT I THOUGHT: Luckily I approached the end of the book just around bedtime. Unfortunately I didn't fall asleep because I kept thinking about what I had read. Even though there were secrets and conflicts, the characters were people you came to care about. Although the story basically revolves around Merritt, it is impossible not to love Loralee, who at first glance appears a stereotypical Southern lady, but is actually a wise and wonderful woman.
I did find it took a while to get the family genealogy straight in my mind as I was reading. I also found Merritt annoying sometimes in her ability to be standoffish. But Karen White writes well and tells a compelling story. I will certainly look for some of her other titles. And if you are like me, the descriptions of Beaufort will make you want to visit and drink sweet tea on a big old veranda overlooking the river.
FIRST SENTENCE: "An unholy tremor rippling through the sticky night air alerted Edith Heyward that something wasn't right." (Prologue, Beaufort, South Carolina July 1955)
BOTTOM LINE: Three women with unhappy secrets weave a tangled web as they tell their stories holding the reader spellbound. Highly recommended.
DISCLAIMER: An advanced reading copy (ARC) of this book was provided to me by NetGalley for an honest review.
Title: The Sound of Glass
Author: Karen White
Genre: Grit-Lit (Southern Women's Fiction)
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
No. of Pages: 426
Copyright: May 12, 2015
Karen White, a New York Times bestselling author of 19 novels, writes 'grit-lit' or southern women's fiction, as well as "a contemporary paranormal mystery series set in Charleston, South Carolina." She lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two children.